Fatal Car Fire in Ballston Parking Garage

Wednesday, Jun 29, 2011  |  Updated 3:25 PM EDT
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Authorities in Arlington are investigating a fatal fire inside a Ballston parking garage.

Fire officials responded around 8:30 a.m., to a report of a car on fire at the Hilton Hotel on N. Stafford Street.

The accident happened on the G1 level of the hotel's parking garage.  Officials said that a 74-year-old woman died in the accident. 

After an initial investigation, authorities said it appears that the woman lost control of her vehicle inside the garage and crashed into a wall. The vehicle hit a protective barrier to a natural gas line, triggering a fire.

The driver, Adele Lapinell, of Annandale, was found dead in the car. The preliminary investigation shows she may have crashed because of a medical issue.

Several floors of the building above the garage were evacuated because of smoke, authorities said, but everyone was allowed back in after a short time.

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